This weekend saw the return of what may be one of the most prolific trade shows in the video games industry. Gamescom 2016 returned this month to tease the future of video games. For those unfamiliar, Gamescom aims to be an annual celebration of video games where excited fans and industry figures gather to glimpse the latest upcoming releases. Held in Cologne, Germany, this year Gamescom managed to attract 345,000 visitors from 97 different countries. This diverse community of gamers may be a testament to the passion many gamers share for the medium.
This year, Gamescom featured an array of demonstrations, including a look at the latest software and hardware with indoor and outdoor exhibits. Most of the software showcase may have featured the latest games inbound this year and next with hardware exhibits placing an emphasis on Virtual Reality. Gamers might have had opportunities to test the latest in Virtual Reality, an immersive virtual experience which some may herald as the future of gaming. With Gamescom demonstrating Virtual Reality headsets this year attendees may have noticed a distinct PlayStation and Oculus VR presence.
This year, some of the biggest names in the video game industry aimed to make an appearance to share their latest announcements. Prolific developer’s Ubisoft aimed to demonstrate a host of new titles they plan to release this year. Among their newest announcements was tactical sword game For Honor, a game set in an era of Vikings, knights and samurai, with a interesting twist on traditional melee combat. Conversely, Ubisoft demonstrated extreme sports title Steep, their snowy experience which aims to provide players control over a pair of skis, a wingsuit or a snowboard as they are propelled down some of the most notable mountain ranges.
Alternatively, aside from the announcements from large developers like Ubisoft, Gamescom aims to provide a platform for smaller titles to garner as much attention. An example of one such title is Yooka-Laylee , originated on crowd funding platform Kickstarter. Yooka-Laylee aims to be a 3D platformer which may have found its voice through community support. From development studio Playtonic Games, Yooka-Laylee aims to rekindle the golden age of platform video games which may be drawing on classics such as Super Mario 64 for inspiration. The world of Yooka-Laylee aims to introduce a host of unique characters to gamers by drawing on the spirit of a past genre. It may be because of platforms such as Gamescom, in combination with Kickstarter, may have allowed a title such as Yooka-Laylee to have found the necessary attention and funding in order to achieve their development and release goals.
Between the multitude of new announcements, journalists were able to reach out to development teams through interviews in a bid to gather additional information about upcoming titles. From blockbuster triple A titles to titles from indie developers, Gamescom’s annual trade fair provides developers with a diverse platform to showcase their latest work. Gamescom may equally provide the gaming community with an array of activities which may offer to unite people through a shared passion. Through news about the latest releases and updates to titles, those interested in this industry may find themselves intrigued at the prospect of the video game industry’s varied and vibrant future.
Gamescom aimed to showcase a vast roster of titles and as numerous and frequent as the announcements may have been, here are some notable updates and releases which may be coming to gaming devices soon:
- Destiny: Rise of Iron (Bungie),
- Final Fantasy XV (Square Enix),
- For Honor (Ubisoft),
- Forza Horizon 3 (Playground Games),
- Horizon: Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games),
- Mafia 3 (2K Games),
- Mario Party Star Rush (Nintendo),
- NBA 2K17 (2K Games),
- Sea of Thieves (Rare),
- Steep (Ubisoft),
- The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo),
How may Gamescom raise awareness of future video game releases?